|Statement by H.E. Mr. Liu Zhenmin, Ambassador and Deputy Representative of China to the United Nations, at the 53rd Session of the Committee on the Status of Women|
New York, 6 March 2009
China associates itself with the statement made by the Sudan on behalf of the Group of 77 and China. The Chinese delegation would like take this opportunity to present to you the recent initiatives taken by China in promoting gender equality and the progress achieved.
Over the past year, despite difficulties caused by natural disasters and the financial crisis, the Chinese government has worked hard to implement the Beijing Declaration and Platform of Action as well as the outcome document of the special session of the GA on the question of women by taking proactive measures to stabilize the economy, improve people's lives, advance the rights and interests of women and further promote gender equality. In China's National Action Plan on Human Rights which will soon be published, there is a chapter dedicated to the promotion and protection of women's rights. The government has launched a project of remote education for rural women, further improved the education and training network for urban and rural women and carried out throughout the country various activities including the mentor programs for female university graduates. In addition, the government has further improved such services for women as micro-credit and tax relief, promulgated "Views on Preventing and Stopping Domestic Violence" and, in cooperation with the relevant UN agencies, explored and advanced national legislation on domestic violence.
We have also endeavored to encourage men to share responsibilities at home and provide support to couples in homemaking. In cooperation with the media, we organized elections of "Men of the Times" with a view to setting good examples and spreading the idea of men's participation in realizing gender equality. We have worked with women's organizations to hold Family Art Festivals in order to increase family cohesion and the sense of happiness. We have also set up education networks for families, held joint conferences on regulating and improving household management and provided professional support for the sharing of family responsibilities between men and women.
As part of our response to migration and the spread of HIV/AIDS, we have further strengthened the study and protection of rural children left behind by migrant workers and worked to provide physical and psychological help and caring for AIDS orphans. In cooperation with women's organizations, we have implemented the "Face to Face" education plan on AIDS prevention for women in 28 provinces.
The devastating earthquake that hit Wenchuan, Sichuan Province on May 12, 2008 caused enormous economic, material and human losses. I wish to express here our deep gratitude to various governments and the international community for the valuable support given to China at that tragic moment. Now, the post-disaster reconstruction is proceeding in a vigorous and orderly manner. Since work related to women forms an important part of reconstruction, we are actively implementing projects of psychological assistance to women and of income augmentation for women in the disaster area and are exploring ways to incorporate gender awareness in the whole process of disaster reduction. In April this year, we will host in Beijing an international conference on gender and disaster reduction in cooperation with the UN International Disaster Reduction Strategy. All friends are welcome to take an interest in and come to this conference.
2010 marks the 15th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform of Action and the 10th anniversary of the Outcome Document of the General Assembly Special Session on Women, but the implementation of these documents remains an arduous task and presents formidable challenges, which requires unremitting efforts and practical actions on our part. The Chinese delegation proposes that:
Firstly, we should deepen international cooperation on the basis of respect for the specific conditions and paths of development of countries to speed up the comprehensive implementation of the Beijing Declaration and Platform of Action and the outcome document of the special session on women.
Secondly, we should fully recognize the effect of the financial crisis on women and enhance gender awareness in formulating response policies and in implementing programs and activities. It is necessary to fully heed the views of various women's groups in the relevant decision making processes.
Thirdly, we should pay attention to the contribution and role of the "care economy", improve social security system, strengthen efforts to build domestic harmony, facilitate the transformation of social roles of men and women and promote the responsibility sharing between men and women.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.